Ashley Hutton’s late strike earns Northern Ireland a point in Wales

Northern Ireland's Ashley Hutton celebrates scoring their second goal during the UEFA Women's Euro 2021 Qualifying Group C match at Rodney Parade, Newport. Photo credit: David Davies/PA Wire.
Northern Ireland's Ashley Hutton celebrates scoring their second goal during the UEFA Women's Euro 2021 Qualifying Group C match at Rodney Parade, Newport. Photo credit: David Davies/PA Wire.
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Northern Ireland stunned Wales with an injury-time equaliser to draw 2-2 in their Women’s Euro 2021 qualifier at Newport.

Ashley Hutton pounced on Laura O’Sullivan’s mistake after the Wales goalkeeper had pushed Demi Vance’s floated free-kick on to the crossbar.

Simone Magill had given Northern Ireland - 27 places below Wales in the FIFA world rankings - an early lead before goals from Emma Jones and Kayleigh Green looked like giving Jayne Ludlow’s side a second Group C win.

Wales, ranked 32nd in the world, had began their campaign on Thursday by hitting the Faroe Islands for six.

Northern Ireland were low on confidence after being on the wrong end of the same 6-0 scoreline in their opening qualifier.

But the visitors began brightly, with Lauren Wade’s angled drive saved by O’Sullivan before Magill struck in the 10th minute.

Sarah McFadden put the ball back into the danger zone after Wales had failed to clear a corner and Magill was left unmarked to head home from a few yards out.

Rachel Furness tested O’Sullivan from 30 yards, the Wales goalkeeper gathering at the second attempt, but the scores were level after 22 minutes.

Furness’ heavy touch allowed Green to set up Angharad James and her shot deflected off Jones to wrongfoot Emma Higgins in the visitors’ goal.

Wales captain Sophie Ingle headed over from a corner as the hosts found some belated momentum, but Northern Ireland continued to threaten and Magill forced another save from O’Sullivan.

But Wales went ahead after 69 minutes when Roberts crossed and Green came steaming in at the far post with a thunderous header.

Northern Ireland went close to an equaliser eight minutes from time when Marissa Callaghan’s speculative 25-yard attempt struck the crossbar, but Hutton levelled things up in the final seconds.

Northern Ireland: Higgins, Newborough, Holdaway, Hutton, Nelson, McFadden, Furness, Vance, Wade, Bell, Magill.